VidCon: Instagram puts viral storytellers front and center

With time spent video-watching on Instagram up 150%, the photo-sharing app has big plans for its top creators at this week's VidCon─and beyond.
June 23, 2016

With more than 500 million active users in its pocket, Instagram has descended upon this year’s VidCon conference in Anaheim, California with a sharpened focus on video creation─and on the growing talent pool that’s behind the camera.

Since Instagram’s launch of video two years ago, and after introducing Hyperlapse and Boomerang, video storytelling on the Facebook-owned photo-sharing app has caught the attention of digital influencers and online personalities, who are increasingly turning to the platform for video-based visual storytelling, online content syndication and content creation.

As such, the amount of time people spend watching video on Instagram has risen 150% over the past six months. And with Instagram’s recent addition of 60-second videos, content creators also have the opportunity to expand on their creative concepts and tell richer visual stories.

In investing in video, starting today Instagram is hosting an official creator’s lounge inside the VidCon convention center that features a custom-built video activation experience. It’s designed to draw attention to the app’s young viral stars, who currently include #VisibleMe video series creator Raymond Braun (50.7 thousand followers), teen musician Shawn Mendes (11 million followers), Disney Channel teen star Joey Bragg (pictured, 1.3 million followers) and teen YouTube and Vine star Brent Rivera (3.2 million followers).

A majority of the app’s most popular video creators already have a strong YouTube presence, but with roughly 300 million people using Instagram on a daily basis, and more than 80% of the app’s users living outside the US, the platform’s potential as a video-creation medium shows no signs of slowing down. According to a February study from Toronto, Canada’s Centennial College’s kidsmediacentre, influencers’ independent Instagram brand deals were worth US$1 billion last year, and the Gen Z demographic  (those who are currently 20 and under ) has shown the marketing industry just how entrepreneurial it can be in attracting some of this payout.  


About The Author
Wendy is Kidscreen’s Associate Editor. When she’s not sourcing material for the brand's daily email newsletter, she’s researching, writing and connecting with others about the newest trends in digital media. Contact Wendy at


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